After Brandon, South Dakota made national headlines for the contaminant radium that was found in the city’s water supply, many are probably wondering, “Is my water safe to drink?”
If Brandon has water woes, how does Sioux Falls fare? We sat down with the city’s water superintendent to find out if what you drink from the sink poses health risks for you and your family.
It may be the last place you think of when it comes to purity, but you’ll only find the cleanest of drinking water in this crematory.
“If it’s good enough for my wife and I at home, it’s good enough for all of my coworkers and any guests that come into the funeral home,” Phil Schmitz with George Boom Funeral Home said.
Schmitz wants the highest quality drinking water he can get.
“My wife and I, Pam, have been filtering our water since basically we got married. So 32 years ago, when we moved to Sioux Falls,” Schmitz said.
The City of Sioux Falls Water Purification Plant delivers 16.5 million gallons a day to homes and businesses like Schmitz’s.
Plant Superintendent Greg Anderson says over 50 team members are working to ensure the utmost quality.
“Sioux Falls complies with every drinking water regulation mandated by EPA or the State of South Dakota,” Anderson said.
In a 2016 quality data report, chromium, a known carcinogen, was found in the city’s water, but the quantity still met the state and EPA standards.
But the fact it was even there, is what worries those like Schmitz.
“It’s not going to kill you, but why put more things into your body that you really don’t need?” Schmitz said.
He tests his tap water and reverse osmosis water regularly for molecules in parts per million. Over 300 were found from the sink and only 24 in his purified water.
“Does it remove everything out of the water down to the H20 molecules? No it doesn’t. So contaminants are regulated to be below a certain level. If a resident wants to take that to a higher standard and put on a treatment system, that’s a personal choice,” Anderson said.
What is comes down to, is how pure do you want your water? For Schmitz, as pure as it can get.
“We just want to drink clean water. We want to put healthy things inside our bodies and we only get one and we want to take care of it, so that’s what it is for us,” said Schmitz.
The Environmental Working Group or EWG, has an online tap water database that allows you to type in your zip code, select your city, and find out which contaminants are in your water.
The City of Sioux Falls, releases a water report each June with its water quality findings.